Compiling this list of the best Paul Rudd movies was harder than I thought it would be! The more I watched him in his roles, the more I realized that there are some stunning performances in there. Luckily, you can’t really go wrong with Paul Rudd, and these movies will show you why he’s the People’s Sexiest Man Alive For 2021 (though I would argue he deserved it long before now). Let’s get to it!
1) Paul Rudd Has Done It All
Before his People’s Sexiest Man Alive cover comes out, Paul Rudd deserves credit for being one of Hollywood’s most prolific leading men. Whether he’s starring in a comedy (Admission), a drama (The Shape of Water), or playing a supporting role (Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy), Paul delivers. He has 40 acting credits to his name and has yet to make a bad movie! It all adds up to his latest honor: Paul is officially People’s Sexiest Man Alive! To celebrate, we’re looking back at five reasons why we’ve always found him sexy —and who knows? Maybe you’ll agree by the end. Buckle up—we have a lot to talk about!
2) Role # 1 – Anchorman
This role is quite possibly my favorite and one of his funniest. I love how Ron Burgundy is so full of himself and he is so sure of himself and his profession. One of my favorite quotes from this movie, I’m kind of a big deal shows that he really thinks he’s better than everyone else in San Diego when in reality, no one wants to listen to him anymore. That may be because he says shocking things like when he says, A man with two sets of clothes: it gives him twice as many options. Also, when he sees another news anchor for another station, he can’t help but make fun of them for how they look. He definitely has an ego about himself and even brags that he graduated top 1% in a journalism class at San Diego State University. Overall, I loved this movie where you get to see all these people fight back against what Ron Burgundy has done to make their lives miserable for over 20 years. It’s finally payback time for them!
3) Role # 2 – Ant-Man
One of his most beloved roles, Paul stole our hearts as Scott Lang in Ant-Man. By far one of Marvel’s lightest films, Ant-Man is still high up on many people’s lists of best superhero movies. While he plays an ex-convict that steals (and then uses) a suit that makes him smaller and stronger than any other Avenger, we still think Paul comes off as sweet and lovable—the perfect guy to watch over us while we sleep at night. And now that we know there will be a sequel coming out next year…you bet we’ll be counting down all 365 days until it hits theaters.
4) Role # 3 – Dinner For Schmucks
Dinner for Schmucks is my personal favorite of Rudd’s performances because it was his most underrated. It’s not like Role Models or Forgetting Sarah Marshall, which had their moments but were fairly overrated movies in general. It was a movie that you probably wouldn’t watch twice if it wasn’t for Paul Rudd. I feel as though they maybe didn’t know how to market it and I think they sold him short on a lot of promotions, hence why so many people haven’t seen it. But if you haven’t watched it I would definitely give it another go as he gives another fantastic performance as Tim Lippe. An awkward man who just wants to be loved despite being pretty much just horrible at life, something Rudd pulls off beautifully again with some great comedic timing.
5) Role # 4 – This Is 40
It’s a no-brainer that 41-year-old Paul Rudd has been knocking it out of the park as a Hollywood A-lister. From his breakout role as Mike Hannigan in Clueless to his recent turns in films like Ant-Man and Anchorman 2, he has been on a steady rise to stardom—and no one is surprised by his recent ascent to sex symbol status. But it wasn’t always clear whether or not Rudd would find success in Tinseltown. Though he tried his hand at screenwriting after college, working for Marvel Entertainment didn’t pay very well; despite scoring an agent, things were looking grim for our beloved Prince Charming. Luckily, fate intervened! After a chance meeting with Ben Stiller on a cross-country flight, he was cast in a bit part for Wet Hot American Summer – little did we know that movie would be where it all began.
6) Role # 5 – Knocked Up
Of all of his roles in romantic comedies, my favorite is still Seth Rogan’s good-natured goofball in Knocked Up (2007). As Pete, Rogan plays an aimless stoner who got drunk at a wedding and ended up knocking up Allison (Katherine Heigl), an aspiring broadcast journalist. Despite their radically different personalities, they grow to love each other throughout pregnancy and parenthood. It’s ridiculously funny—and surprisingly touching. Movies like Knocked Up remind us that you don’t have to fall for your soulmate when you meet them; maybe you just get knocked up!
7) Role # 6 – The Perks Of Being A Wallflower
Losing yourself in a story is one of life’s greatest pleasures. When you finish an incredible story, you get to be not only physically satisfied but emotionally satiated. It’s for that reason that I chose Perks of Being a Wallflower for my favorite book on my favorite book list. Perks was published by MTV Books in 1999 and follows high school senior Charlie as he navigates high school while learning about relationships, sexuality and living life for himself. Charlie writes letters to his friend (the reader) while including passages from other literary greats like Ernest Hemingway and Virginia Woolf because he thinks they help tell his story better than he can. I read all 1,225 pages over three days during Thanksgiving break after getting it as a gift from my girlfriend. As soon as I finished it, I knew there was something special about it. Then before opening up Netflix, I got out pen and paper and wrote out how it made me feel using these words: wonderful, peculiar, preoccupied, inspired. Because of Perks, I went back to school with a renewed passion for reading literature because now that book felt more personal than ever before. If you haven’t read it yet, stop what you are doing right now (seriously…stop), go buy it online or at your local bookstore and give yourself permission to step away from the screen for five days. You won’t regret it.